This post explores how free AI tools can currently be used to generate a name for this series, as well as design a logo. Will AI replace design agencies? While AI can do the job, it would require in depth prompts from experts to generate a suitable outcome.
There are so many AI blogs, podcasts, newsletters and articles out there, it’s difficult to compete for attention. And that’s not my intention. This series is about small discussions you’d likely have between two coffees - with a friend, a colleague, or a date.
“A large language model is a sophisticated AI system that learns how human language works by studying a massive amount of text data. It can understand and generate human-like text for various tasks, like answering questions or writing articles. Examples include GPT-3, GPT-4, and BERT”
I went directly to ChatGPT - a conversational AI developed by OpenAI that uses natural language processing to generate human-like text responses in conversations with users - what I should call this series. With very little context, I simply asked it what an AI blog should be called. The free version of ChatGPT comes with lower priority access, potential for longer response times, and restrictions on the number of tokens generated, which can limit the complexity and length of responses. Therefore asking at 2:30pm on a Thursday meant it raised an error, likely because of high traffic. I asked the question again and received the following response:
Far too wordy, generic and impersonal. Telling ChatGPT that led to yet another error, so I stepped back from using an LLM for a moment and thought about those two coffees.
I realised that if I wanted this blog to be personal to me, I couldn’t rely on AI to come up with the name. Even if I’d decided to spend 4 hours perfecting prompts to generate the right responses, a lot of the work would be done by me anyway - I’d perhaps only get a few ideas from AI to help my thinking.
Not wanting to slow the process of my blog by dwelling too much on a name, my thought process and creative leap went as follows:
It needs to relate to a conversation you’d have over coffee
My name is often pronounced “fi-roo-zay” because it is confused with “cafe”.
My surname is French
It needs to clearly state it’s a series about AI
How about CafAI?
I asked Claude.ai, another LLM by Anthropic, for feedback. Claude is super complimentary of my choice and justified the name more than just me liking it. So now I can’t talk myself out of the name or try and come up with anything else because I just want to crack on with some posts. Let’s see if I hate it later when I realise how many brands are using a pun on AI in their name.
Claude is super complimentary of my choice and justified the name more than just me liking it. So now I can’t talk myself out of the name or try and come up with anything else because I just want to crack on with some posts. Let’s see if I hate it later when I realise how many brands are using a pun on AI in their name.
I came across the website Designs.ai from following Ben’s Bites, the essential AI newsletter. As promised in my first post, I’m only going to be using free tools. So I checked out their free trial and went through the various steps. In order to come up with a more tailored output, it asks for your industry, likely using vast amounts of data to categorise logos into buckets to make yours fit closely with it.
It also asks whether you want your logo to be an icon, a name or an initial. If you’re design savvy, you’d have a preference here. But if you’re not, you’d rely on an agency with some very talented designers to select the right option for your brand.
This highlights a limitation of AI, that it can only suggest a design direction, but cannot finesse it without an expert designer.
After picking a colour palette that was my personal preference again, Designs.ai generated a number of example outputs. It took quite a few generations to find something that I liked, perhaps because I’m picky, or perhaps because the design wasn’t quite up to scratch from the standards I’ve seen in logo design.
Even after selecting my favourites, I ended up simply taking some of the suggestions, adding them to Adobe Illustrator and took around 10 minutes finessing it to a style I liked, including changing the colours and adjusting the kerning.
If you’re not really someone with a design eye, AI generated logos and colour palettes are a way of getting something quick, but not necessarily right.
While many of the logos we see today have evolved over time and probably started as bad as this, memorable logos need time, effort and expertise. If you want a company name, logo and colour palette to be relevant and personal, AI cannot generate this for you. Even if you perfect prompts and spend hours generating responses until you get the right one for you (which will be different for everyone), AI needs you to do most of the hard work. It’s a useful tool to help if you don’t have the capital or resource and need something quick, but AI currently can’t replace the expertise you’d find in a designer or design agency.
P.S. It’s actually pronounced “fi-ru-zeh”.